Assemblywomen Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher & Cristina Garcia Statements on Diaper Tax Hearing

Monday, May 8, 2017

SACRAMENTO – (Monday, May 8, 2017) – California State Assemblywomen Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D-San Diego) and Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens) released the following statements after the Assembly Revenue & Taxation Committee did not approve Assembly Bill 479, which they introduced to repeal sales tax on diapers, tampons and other feminine health products: 

“We knew going into this that poor babies don’t have a lobbyist. Unfortunately, hard liquor companies have plenty of lobbyists. The Governor asked us to find a revenue source to make repealing the diaper tax revenue neutral, and we did – an almost negligible 1.5 cent-per-drink increase in hard liquor excises. This was a very clear choice, and it’s disappointing that the majority of the committee chose booze over babies.”

“Unfortunately, today my colleagues voted for liquor and booze over ladies and babies,” added Assemblywoman Cristiana Garcia, joint author of AB479. “California’s liquor taxes are among the lowest in the nation, yet two penny’s more for a cocktail is more egregious than my blood stained pants or an infant’s poopy diaper.  There is no happy hour for menstruation. I can't ask for a 'single' instead of a 'double', with or without cramps. We say we value the health of Californians, but we’ll pass on the opportunity to put the health of women, children and the elderly for a cheap drink."

Diapers can cost as much as $100 per child, per month, making diapers a significant expense for low-income parents. A lack of diapers can even be a barrier to employment, as childcare facilities generally require a full day supply of diapers for each child enrolled. Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher introduced Assembly Bill 479 to repeal the sales tax currently charged on diapers and feminine hygiene products like tampons and pads. The bill called for an increase in the excise tax on hard liquor by roughly 1.5 cents per drink to make the sales tax repeal revenue-neutral. AB 479 is joint authored with Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (D-Bell Gardens).  

For more information on AB 479, or to schedule an interview with Assemblywoman Gonzalez Fletcher, contact John Vigna at (916) 319-2080 or (916) 212-0357.